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“Neglected”

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Mazambala Island Lodge
England
Level 6 Contributor
177 reviews
107 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 90 helpful votes
“Neglected”
Reviewed 22 May 2013

A lovely boat ride from the car park to an Island Lodge that has definitely seen better days. The traditional bungalows are a bit basic and not very clean. The cheap mattresses on the beds have no covers so just a thin sheet on them and we just couldn't face using the shower. The swimming pool full of debris with a few dirty & elderly chairs around.The evening meal was of a reasonable standard and the Staff were pleasant. There was no internet or Wifi. One night was enough.

  • Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
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1 Thank oscar0734
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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92 reviews from our community

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English first
İstanbul, Türkiye
Level 2 Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 May 2013

This lodge has a small room, windows are open, there are only mosquito nets, it gets freezing in the middle of the night, it is like staying in a tent, not in a lodge. The toilet and shower which are also in the room with only a separation and no door is almost open to the garden, that leaves you with no intimacy. We preferred not to take a shower. There is only one electric plug (it is in the toilet near the faucet) in the room so if you have many electrical items, sorry folks! Charging gets to be a problem.

Your travel to this lodge starts in an autopark near the river where hotel staff welcomes you with boats which take you to the hotel on an island. The bad thing about it is this is the only way you can go and they make you sign a paper stating that you take the responsibility to travel on this boat. the river is full of dangerous animals, your luggage travels separately on another boat. signing papers feels very awkward.

A very nice gentleman, who we learn is the manager of the hotel welcomes you at the entrance with warm smiles (who also farewells you too the same way) but you feel this smile is not genuine. We stayed there on open buffet terms, he is always around watching us, and we all (16 people in the group) felt that he was counting our morse, control how much we ate etc. Very discomforting. They presented green salad as a side dish for fish but if you ate beef, no salad for you!!! It was more obvious during breakfast, the tables were set before we came and there were 1 slice of bacon and 1 slice of cheese for each one of us. You have to beg for another and they make you scrambled eggs only- no chance for omelettes.very poor breakfast You always feel you have limits - only the bar is fine because you pay for it extra. Such a torture. And he knew beforehand a muslim group was coming - not nice presenting bacon and no other choice. ı myself was starving even after I finished eating my breakfast. The manager is always around smiling and asking you whether everything is alright but this does not solve the problem. because the smile is fake. The less you eat the better he feels.

  • Stayed April 2013, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
3 Thank daygun
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers are raving about these Katima Mulilo hotels

Bromont, Canada
Level 6 Contributor
318 reviews
67 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 117 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 March 2013

Can you imagine: this lodge is located on a island in the middle of the river Kwando. You take a boat (10m ride) thru small channels before reaching this site. What a thrill ; we even had a hippo following the boat jumping out of the water behind the boat (yes-yes- they can do that) like a dolphin. Something to see once in your lifetime. We slept in small huts (thatched roof, brick walls, ceramic floors), very well equipped. And the food- WOW. : mushroom crepes- stroganoff beef Namibian style, honey carrots, etc... A chef meal.
Perfect setting for a nice evening (alone or with friends- we were 4 altogether). It is a place to go if you visit Namibia .

Room Tip: closest to the main building.
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  • Stayed February 2013, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank B265
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Guildford, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
25 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 February 2013

After another long drive the safari vehicles were parked up and we together with our luggage were transferred to marsh boats for the trip to the lodge. En-route we saw baby crocodiles, claw-less otter, and numerous birds. On arriving at the lodge we were warmly met by Stephanie and her staff who told us all about the lodge and the facilities. Our room was a large simple family thatched cottage that could have slept five people with 3 single beds and one double bed all with clean well fitted mosquito nets. A torn bottom sheet with only a mattress underneath on the double bed did not help with our views on hygiene and cleanliness. The bathroom was adequate but could have done with updating. Overall the room could have been somewhat cleaner than it was but with the type of building it was and with the bush type surroundings some difficulty in achieving this was clearly being experienced. Overall meals were quite acceptable and the staff tried hard to achieve a good standard. Despite the odd problem with switching from the generator during the day to battery supply at night, the remoteness of the location and the waterways all added to the safari experience, as did the boat cruise through the reed and papyrus flanked waterways where we saw many hippo's, a water monitor and an abundance of birds and other wildlife. Overall a great experience.

Room Tip: Make sure the room is clean. Use a torch because the lighting is not adequate for a good examination...
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  • Stayed January 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Peter S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Windhoek, Namibia
Level 2 Contributor
3 reviews
Reviewed 6 December 2012

This place is just amazing, I was there a few weeks ago for a week,the place is very neat and the food is amazing. All the vegetables they prepared are organic and grown in their own back yard,
We also saw alot of Elephants and Impala's on the game drive and they have a wide varienty of bird species, the rooms are very beautiful and have nets for windows instead of glass which makes the outdoor experience just more enjoyable. They also have very friendly staff and they made me feel very welcome and at home.The gamedrive guides are also very friendly and can tell you alot about the different animals and birds living there. They also have a boatcruise which takes place in the afternoon around the big Island. There is also a double story deck where you can enjoy a sundowner in the afternoon and look out onto the plains of the Kwando river. There you can see the most beautiful sunsets ever seen.The restaurant is also on a deck and you feel as if you are eating in treehouse which is a great thing. The tables are always nicely decorated and candle lit for a soft atmosphere,they also dont play music in the restaurant/bar because the sound of nature is enough music and more peaceful.
I had an amazing stay and I wouldnt mind going back there in the future.

Room Tip: The rooms at the back are quieter and you rearly hear the noise from the restaurant
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  • Stayed November 2012, travelled solo
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Helpful?
Thank Denise M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Leamington Spa, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
245 reviews
158 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 165 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 October 2012

We stayed here for one night only as we travelled the Caprivi Strip from west to east. Having left our vehicle on the mainland, we were swiftly taken by boat/motorised raft along the beautiful reedy waterways to the island. What a way to arrive.

The lodge is neat and tidy, with about 20 cottages scattered around the grounds, and a large open sided main building with the bar and dining room, and adjacent to the huge and high viewing platform. There is a sparkling pool, but we did not use it. The views from the platform offer a different and wonderful perspective on the river landscape and it was great to while away a few hours watching the light play on the reeds and observe the birds flitting around. We could see hippos and elephants in the distance too.

We had two adjacent cottages, each with comfortable beds and large shower rooms. The cottages had mosquito netting fitted in the unglazed window openings, and were spacious, cool, light, and airy. The lack of glass meant that noise carried, but once the people in the bar calmed down(!) there were only bush noises to hear. The dawn chorus was a splendid start to the day.

Dinner was delicious, quite simple but well-prepared and presented. Breakfast was tasty if basic, but we felt a bit uncomfortable about the rude and dismissive way the manager spoke to the waiting staff (he had also lit a cigarette whilst we were eating dinner the night before, most annoying).

We did not take part in any of the activities on offer, but could have gone on various boat trips if we had had the time. As it was, the journey back to the car park gave us another opportunity to get close to the river.

We felt that Mazambala could be a truly magical hideaway, if only the management paid a bit more attention to all guests (not just those staying up late drinking in the bar) and improved their attitude to the local staff.

  • Stayed July 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank TalbotTravellers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Perth, Australia
Level 6 Contributor
102 reviews
59 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 April 2012

From the initial friendly greeting at the boat ramp, to the greeting that awaited us at the camp by the entire staff- we knew we would enjoy our stay. Rooms are simply decorated in white calico – making them look quite pristine and not as dark. Again there were single beds (apparently they do have a few doubles), a fan that works on battery throughout the night, Mosquito nets and sprays against insects (although there were not that many mosquitoes). There are neat walkways between the huts. Meals are served in a huge elevated dining area which, together with two viewing platforms, makes up the communal areas.
Led by the very knowledgeable Harris, we did the river cruise and saw Hippo up close and about 60 elephants! Some were frolicking right by our boat- it was a fantastic sighting. We also did an interesting bush walk and a game drive.
There is continuous maintenance going on at the Camp, the gardens are well looked after.

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank travelhagPerth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Mazambala Island Lodge

Property: Mazambala Island Lodge
Address: Ngweze, Katima Mulilo, Namibia
Region: Namibia > Caprivi Region > Katima Mulilo
Hotel Style:
Ranked #9 of 10 Speciality Lodging in Katima Mulilo
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Mazambala Island Lodge 2.5*
Number of rooms: 15

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